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Vasily Smyslov vs David Neil Lawrence Levy
"When the Levy Breaks" (game of the day Mar-15-2007)
Hastings (1969/70), Hastings ENG, rd 4, Jan-01
English Opening: King's English Variation. Hungarian Attack (A25)  ·  1-0



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Kibitzer's Corner
< Earlier Kibitzing  · PAGE 1 OF 2 ·  Later Kibitzing>
Mar-15-07  Bare Beginner: I'm looking forward to what better players than me say about this game. I don't understand it at all. However, it seems that 9 ... e4 was not such a good idea. Is that where black begins to falter?
Mar-15-07  think: <Bare Beginner> I don't think that e4 is a bad idea, as it shuts white's powerful fianchettoed bishop in and gains space.

Black's Levy did indeed break, or was about to when he resigned. Incidentally, the Led Zeppelin song is pretty awesome.

Premium Chessgames Member
  al wazir: Black should have played 29...Qg7. Even then his pieces would have been locked up forever after 30. Qxg7 Kxg7 31. Rf6.
Premium Chessgames Member
  An Englishman: Good Evening: <Bare Beginner>, in the current game, there are so many places where Black could have played differently but not necessarily better that it feels like a mystery. One place to look is 16...Nc8 instead of the possible ...Bxd4. Swapping off a financhettoed Bishop for a Knight is odd, and Black's remaining minors aren't that great, but White's Bishops won't have much play either, and Black has solid control over e4. It's really hard to say where Black went wrong. I would win games like this with White in my playing days and never understand why.
Mar-15-07  Confuse: al wazir, if that happened I think black could fight back with 31. Bxe6

If Rxf8, Bh3. This is just some quick speculation, it might not work.

Mar-15-07  gandu: The losing move seems more 30 ...Qh6. 30 ...Qe5 would have been slightly better.
Mar-15-07  nuwanda: hi <gandu>, i have only the look on the screen, but after 30...Qe5 it seems to me as if white can force a pawn-ending that is won for him...
Mar-15-07  Jack Kerouac: "If it keeps on raining,
Mamma you got to move, boy-
When the Levy breaks,
The king has got no home..oooh-who."
Premium Chessgames Member
  kevin86: Pressure! Pressure!! Pressure!!!

The black bishop is pressed beyond its breaking point and will either perish or turn to diamonds.

The pun fits the game perfectly!!

Mar-15-07  tatarch: The Zeppelin tune is certainly awesome, but it's also a cover. Zep made it their own--Wikipedia actually has a pretty good account of the innovative recording techniques they used--but the song was first recorded in 1929 by Kansas Joe McCoy. I remember being a little disappointed when I first learned this in my younger days, until I got a little wiser to the ways of rock and learned that many of the British greats--the Stones, Cream, Zeppelin, etc--borrowed heavily from the American blues tradition. In so doing though, they were able to bring the innovations of repressed black musicians to the white mainstream in America. "When the Levee Breaks" is a prime example--a song written by and for poor, segregated blacks in the south became a mainstay for middle to upper class white potheads in suburbia. We should all be greatful to Zep--not only for blowing doors off with their music but also for indirectly building racial harmony. How's that for a soapbox!
Mar-15-07  gandu: Hi <nuwanda>, i agree with you, blak is lost anyhow, but Fritz gives white +8.03 after 30 ...Qh6 and "only" +2.70 after 30 ...Qe5
Mar-15-07  Jack Kerouac: <tatarch> Same for 'Whole lotta Love'.
Mar-15-07  Duque Roquero: Maybe the difference was the weak black bishop. Its low mobility allowed Smyslov to double his rooks on the f file.
Mar-15-07  Inf: i think from move 24 we have an endgame... black does not know where to place the queen and spent many moves trying. i think that was the problem for black. to me black did not have a plan here whereas white did have one... and a big one! who said: better to have a bad plan that no plan at all??
Premium Chessgames Member
  IMlday: 11..Be6 looks weak to me. After 11..c6 White might play 12.d5 anyway, even without the tempo. Or 11..a6!? e.g. 12.a4 axb5 13.axb5 c6 etc.
Mar-15-07  schnarre: Led Zeppelin...gotta love the classics!
Mar-15-07  outplayer: There must be a better move than 24...Qg4. Engine analysis are welcome.
Mar-15-07  touchthesky: All I want to say is... Long live the English. I don't understand how Black is willing to put himself into a cramped position with no great hopes of attack.
Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: After manoeuvring of pieces, Smyslov got the spatial advantage & absolute control of the f file with his heavy pieces completely tied David & this time it was Gollaite who triumpant.
Premium Chessgames Member
  ketchuplover: congrats to Avari Viraf on his accomplishments!
Mar-15-07  Chlipchlop: <Bare Beginner>
Smyslov only tries with his opening to gain control of the important d5 and e4, playing g3 and Bg2 before Nf3 for this reason. Then with pawns advance, he gains a lot of space in the queenside first using the pressure of his g2 bishop, and when there's nothing left to gain, he then play in the center with d4. At this point, he has a great space advantage. This way, he has a very easy play and he converts his advantage with a winning domination of the f column that gives him a piece ahead at the end.

What's interesting in Smyslov play in this game is that he's not afraid of exchanging his Nd4 against the powerful Bg7, or to put one of his knight in a4 to control both black knights.

Mar-15-07  jheiner: Thanks for the analyses <ChlipChlop> <think> <An Englishman> <Inf> <fm avari viraf>. Really helps me to crack this game open and see some good principles of play. Completely why I come here. Thanks again.
Premium Chessgames Member

Smyslov sets up the typical fianchetto with his KB in the English

Then he gains space on the Q side with paw advance -the on move 15 he starts to break up the Black pawn formation with f3!

The with Bb2 and Na5 he perpares Q side action - while keeping an eye on the K side.

Black swaps one knight to relieve some pressure. But he now has a doubled pwan - a potential weaknesss.

19 e4 begins to gain space in the centre (threatens to weaken Black's K-side with exf5).

20..Nc5 gains some space for Black - strongly placed knight. Position is maybe still =

22 Nb3! challenges the well placed knight. It also gains the soon to be weak Black square esp. after 22.... Bxb2 23 Qxb2 or as played 22 Rxb2

I think 22 Rxb2 is better as he wants to transfer his R to the K-side if need be note he now has the f file. White is a little better.

24 axb3 now Whites Q-side pawns are strong (they are connected together lie a steel matrix) as both sides have doubled pwans but White has more space on that side - and slightly more on the K-side.

He has to watch the a file - both sides do. But now if 24...Ra8 25 Ra2 and White controls that file - all well worked out by Smyslov.

25 Qc3! Controls the a1 h8 diagonal - Black is in danger.

28 Bd7 he could reach this position as he controled so much space. Black had to NOT let this happen

After move 28 the win is fairly easy. White has the f file AND pressure on the Q-side if an ending happens.

Two crucial moves by Smylsov were 12 d5 and Nc4 stopping c6 and allowing him to play f3 to undermine Black's centre pawn chain.

Pawns are the soul of chess.

Premium Chessgames Member
  Richard Taylor: Note also that the White (white squared) B has much more mobility than the Black (white squared) B - because of Smyslov's pawn placement.

Also I think 9 ..e4 is an error -it "releases the tension" too early - Black needed to wait and see what White is doing before he played that move.

White will (possibly) proceed with a Q-side pawn advance using his B on g2 as a long range weapon, and Black will try a K-side attack.

Premium Chessgames Member
  fm avari viraf: <Ketchuplover>Thanks for your Congrats. I just tried to open your site but it says, there is misspelling.
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